LT, Fenwick swimmers in mix for state meet
Morton, Riverside Brookfield building toward future
The two most important swim meets of the season are the sectionals to determine which swimmers advance to state, and the state meet itself. Yet the regular season is crucial for building endurance, and teams like Lyons Township, Riverside Brookfield and Fenwick hope to be competitive as the regular season continues to unfold.
Coach: Kurt Johns
Liz Murphy sr. 100 breast, relays
Lauren Rosenberger sr. 200 free, 500 free, relays
Mackenna Dunn so. 50 free, 100 free, relays
Kristen Young jr. 100 fly, relays
Kelly Ryser jr. diving
Kimmy Vitek jr. diving
Outlook: Despite the loss of multiple key seniors, Lyons Township is again hoping to win conference and the sectional meet.
LT beat rival Hinsdale Central 105-81 on Thursday to take a key step in winning the West Suburban Silver. Downers Grove North should be the other top competition in the conference. Previously, the Lions had dropped duals to strong teams in Naperville North and New Trier.
With all the personnel losses, coach Kurt Johns wasn't sure what his team would look like – and he's still not entirely clear on that. A talented freshmen class has added a lot of depth to a roster that already had six state returners.
“That’s a good top core and then we got a whole other group of girls stepping up," Johns said. "It will be interesting between some of our seniors.”
Both divers, juniors Kelly Ryser and Kimmy Vitek are back after qualifying for state. Ryser is already a two-time state qualifier. Liz Murphy, Kristen Young and Mackenna Dunn return from relays that scored at state last year. Lauren Rosenberger also qualified in the 200- and 500-yard freestyle races.
Coach: Heather Mathis
Sydney Veon sr. 100 free, 100 breaststroke, relays
Nicole Capone jr. 50 free
Keri Burke so. 100 backstroke, relays
Dana Callanan sr. 50 free, 200 IM, relays
Outlook: Senior Sydney Veon is the team's lone state returner after making it in the 100-yard breaststroke. Veon is the school record holder in the event and also swam her way onto the school's top-10 list in the 100 freestyle with a lifetime best early this season.
In addition to Veon, seniors Dana Callanan, junior Nicole Capone and sophomore Keri Burke are top varsity returners.
In early meets so far this season, the Bulldogs placed eighth at Hinsdale South, fourth in their own eight-team invite and eighth at the York Invitational on Saturday.
Coach: Renee Miller
Paulina Kaminski sr. 200 IM, 100 breast
Mimi Schneider sr. 100 fly, relays
Kierston Farley-Sepe so. 100 fly, 100 back, relays
Outlook: The Friars are hoping they can close the nine-point gap between them and New Trier that decided the state title last year.
Three of the five swimmers that made individual event finals at state are back, including Mimi Schneider, who is the top returner in the state in the 100-yard butterfly. Sophomore Kierston Farley-Sepe was just behind her by placing third in that race last year and was fourth in the 100 backstroke.
Paulina Kaminski is also the top returner in the 100 breaststroke after placing third behind two seniors.
Those top tier swimmers will be aided by senior relay returners in Colleen Barron and Maggie Sheean.
The Friars showed their speed in the pool by winning the Lady Friars Invite against the likes of Loyola, St. Charles North and Sandburg on Saturday.
Coach: Scott Gourley
Stephanie Torres jr. 100 fly, 200 IM, relays
Crystal Mariscal jr. freestyle, relays
Nadia Pantaleon jr. 100 backstroke, relays
Outlook: Morton coach Scott Gourley doesn't expect a state qualifier this year, but the Mustang swimmers are pushing for school records.
Junior Stephanie Torres already holds the frosh/soph school record in the 100-yard butterfly and is hoping to break the varsity record before she graduates. Fellow juniors Crystal Mariscal and Nadia Pantaleon will also be top swimmers for the team.
“We’re a young team," Gourley said. "We have a lot of seniors who graduated last year so these kids are being counted on to fill in those shoes.”
Gourley said the Mustang swimmers are counted on to be jack-of-all-trade type swimmers so they move around events depending on how they can best score at meets. Mariscal is an example of that, racing in the 100, 200 and 500 freestyle races depending on the meet.